College of Fine Arts News Archive

September 2015

  • Center student attending SFA on art scholarship

    Center student attending SFA on art scholarship

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    September 4, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art and Friends of the Visual Arts have announced that Julie McSwain, who graduated from Center High School this past May, is this year’s recipient of the East Texas Regional High School Art Scholarship.

    The SFA Friends of the Visual Arts Board provides an annual scholarship to one deserving high school senior from East Texas who plans to enroll in the SFA School of Art to help them further their educational and professional goals in the field of art. McSwain is currently attending SFA.

    “Julie is the type of student I can easily find many positive things to write about,” Center art teacher Ruby Woodward wrote in nominating her for the award last spring. “The quality of her work is the first thing that comes to mind, as she is not one to settle on the first (or easiest) idea. She really dives into her work and is not content until she produces something beautiful.”

    In her artist’s statement describing her work, McSwain wrote: “Creating art is one thing that takes my mind off all of the chaos and stress and responsibilities in my life. It can take you to a different world and make hours fly by, yet it only feels like a few minutes have passed. I often times relate my art to music, another thing that helps me escape reality. While most of my life my art has consisted of pencil and paper, the past couple of years I have been fortunate to digitally create art using Illustrator and other programs, and I’ve recently really enjoyed using charcoal and prismacolors and some painting. However, no matter the materials I use, I enjoy creating art not only because it is something that helps pass the time, but it also makes me feel a million times better and impacts my life in so many ways.”

    “There has never been a project I’ve assigned that Julie did not deliver something top of the line,” Woodard wrote. “This student is ready for college level work. I was very pleased to hear of her enrollment at SFA. She will be an asset to your art department.”

    The SFA Friends of the Visual Arts is made up of community members who support the arts in East Texas and provide monetary assistance to students enrolling in the School of Art by conducting fundraisers, such as the annual 12 x 12 event each July.

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  • Allen, Petti to present collaborative program

    Allen, Petti to present collaborative program

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    Fred Allen
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    Ron Petti
    September 4, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    Fred J. Allen, director of bands at Stephen F. Austin State University, and Ron Petti, director of accompanying, will present a recital of music for piano, flute and clarinet at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 15, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The performance is part of the Cole Performing Arts Series of the SFA School of Music. Featured pieces will be “Arabesque No. 1” by Claude Debussy, “Fantaisie for Flute and Piano” by Gabriel Fauré and “Sonatina for Clarinet and Piano” by Malcolm Arnold.

    “This is not my usual role at SFA,” Allen said of the performance. “Usually, I am conducting or teaching, but I miss performing as I did in my younger years.Prior to teaching at SFA, Allen had performed professionally as a woodwind doubler in shows at Opryland USA, for the Ringling Brothers Circus and for more than 40 musicals and operas. In addition, he was formerly principal clarinet in the Fort Worth Civic Orchestra and piccoloist in the Abilene Philharmonic.

    Petti directs the Masters of Music degree in collaborative piano at SFA and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses. He maintains a demanding concert schedule with SFA guest artists and faculty, including serving as pianist in The Alazan Trio, a group specializing in the performance of piano trios by American composers. As a soloist, he frequently gives recitals, has presented master classes in piano, served as an adjudicator in piano competitions, and has concertized throughout the U.S.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

    Cole Concert Hall is located in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building, 2210 Alumni Drive.

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  • Bassist Rusev to perform at SFA

    Bassist Rusev to perform at SFA

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    September 4, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    Ilko Rusev, principal bassist of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Medellin and professor at the University of Antioquia in Medellin, Colombia, will perform a recital at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 13, in Cole Concert Hall on the campus of Stephen F. Austin State University.

    The program will include virtuosic compositions by the romantic composer Giovanni Bottesini and will feature the beloved “Arpeggione” sonata by Franz Schubert.

    The performance is part of the Cole Performing Arts Series of the SFA School of Music.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

    Cole Concert Hall is located in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building, 2210 Alumni Drive.

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  • University Series to open new season with Sonali Skandan dance group

    University Series to open new season with Sonali Skandan dance group

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    The 2015-2016 University Series presented by the SFA College of Fine Arts will open with Sonali Skandan and Company performing at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

    September 4, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The College of Fine Arts at Stephen F. Austin State University continues its tradition of bringing professional artists to East Texas, opening the 2015-2016 University Series with Sonali Skandan and Company at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

    Sonali Skandan & Jiva Dance Company presents compelling and dynamic works based on the timeless idiom of Bharatanatyam. Jiva Dance sees the importance of preserving and promoting the traditional arts, yet also understands the need to incorporate innovative techniques to reach diverse audiences, according to John W. Goodall, associate dean for the College of Fine Arts.

    “This company is comprised of exceptionally talented dancers all trained in the traditional and classic dance form of South India,” Goodall said. “The company has performed at notable venues to tremendous audience acclaim. The repertoire ranges from highly traditional solo works to more versatile group items that highlight the evolving nature of the dance form.”

    Prior to the performance, Heather Samuelson, dance instructor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Science at SFA, will present a 7 p.m. informative talk in Griffith Gallery about the company. The gallery is located across the hall from Turner Auditorium, which is located in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive.

    The audience is invited back to the gallery for a post-performance reception to meet the performers and to honor the event’s corporate sponsor, Commercial Bank of Texas.

    Single event ticket prices are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and $10 for students/youth. For tickets or more information, visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu or call the Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.

    SFA students may purchase Rush tickets for $3 during regular office hours starting Monday, Sept. 14. Students must present a valid SFA ID for purchase and at the door on event night.

    For more information on the 2015-2016 University Series, visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Still time to audition for SFA Choristers

    Still time to audition for SFA Choristers

    September 2, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    There are still a few opportunities to audition for the new SFA Choristers offered by the Stephen F. Austin State University Music Preparatory Division.

    Those interested should contact director Carolyn Andrews at (936) 552-6593 or carolyn.andrews@suddenlink.net for an appointment on Saturday, Sept. 5, or another time if unable to audition on Saturday.

    The SFA Choristers provides choral training for East Texas youth in fifth through eighth grades. Rehearsals will be from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays beginning Sept. 8. Tuition is $60 for 14 weeks.

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  • SFA’s First Friday Film Series to feature ‘Tomato Republic’

    SFA’s First Friday Film Series to feature ‘Tomato Republic’

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    September 2, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art and the Friends of the Visual Arts will present a free, one-night screening of “Tomato Republic” at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 11, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    In this hour-long film, documentarians Jenna Jackson, Anthony Jackson and Whitney Graham Carter delve into the thoughts and feelings of rural East Texas residents during a heated mayoral race in Jacksonville, Texas, home of the annual Tomato Festival.

    Texas Monthly writer Skip Hollandsworth described the film as “a marvel.”

    “Unlike any other documentary I have ever seen, it takes its audience straight into the glorious, laugh-out-loud eccentricities of small-town Texas life,” he wrote.

    The film website at tomatorepublic.vhx.tv/ has the following synopsis: “A flamboyant restaurateur, a good ol' boy and a political ingénue walk into a small-town political contest and compete head to head to head for the non-paid mayoral seat of the Tomato Republic. What happens next is anyone’s guess.”

    “Tomato Republic” premiered last year at the Dallas Film Festival where it was given a special jury prize. It was also screened at the 2015 Nacogdoches Film Festival.

    This screening is part of the School of Art’s monthly Friday Night Film Series and is sponsored in part by the Nacogdoches Film Festival, William Arscott, The Liberty Bell, Nacogdoches Junior Forum, Karon Gillespie, Mike Mollot, Main Street Nacogdoches, David Kulhavy, John and Kristen Heath, Brad Maule, Galleria Z, Jill Carrington, Jean Stephens and Jim and Mary Neal.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • SFA art faculty exhibition to showcase variety of mediums

    SFA art faculty exhibition to showcase variety of mediums

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    “Another Night Watch,” an oil-on-canvas painting by Shaun Roberts, is among the works of SFA art faculty to be exhibited Sept. 10 through Oct. 17 in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House.

    September 2, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    Members of the School of Art faculty at Stephen F. Austin State University will exhibit their work in a show that opens with a reception at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 10, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    As in the past, this annual exhibition will showcase a variety of mediums, including sculpture, painting, photography, metal work, ceramics and prints, according to John Handley, director of SFA art galleries.

    The show will also feature the artwork of Shaun Roberts, assistant professor of painting at SFA, in a separate exhibition in the Reavley Gallery of the art center.

    “Each year we take this opportunity to literally show off the wonderful talents of our School of Art faculty, who, in addition to teaching, work as professional artists and exhibit their work in museums and galleries across the United States and abroad,” Handley said. “It is also an opportunity to showcase one of our newer faculty members – in this case, Shaun Roberts.”

    Roberts completed his BFA at SFA in painting, and went on to complete an MFA at the University of Washington under the artist Zhi Lin. He joined the SFA faculty first as an adjunct in 2012.

    “My paintings are influenced by experiences growing up in rural East Texas,” Roberts said in his artist’s statement. “I work from a mixture of direct observation, photos and imagination. The narratives are a mix of fact, fiction and allegory. The images are charged with an ironic blend of pathos, humor, violence and the social and political implications of the rural working class.”

    Roberts said he draws inspiration from baroque painters Caravaggio, Velazquez and Franz Halls and enjoys the dynamic compositions, the use of high contrast lighting, and the psychological tension in them. He also likes works by authors like Flannery O’Connor or Eudora Welty, who write short stories about the rural south.

    “I also find cinema to be a great source of inspiration,” he said. “I like to pause films when anxiety is at its highest point and analyze the scene, trying to figure out what about it gives the tension and how it could work in painting.”

    The exhibition and opening is sponsored in part by Friends of the Visual Arts, Nacogdoches Junior Forum and Hampton Inn. Admission is free.

    “In past exhibitions, we have received wonderful feedback,” Handley said, “and the public and students enjoy seeing the professionalism of the faculty here at SFA.”

    The exhibition runs through Oct. 17.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For additional information, call (936) 468-1131.

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